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Blackjack Variants

Welcome one and all to the Blackjack-Guru’s page on blackjack variants. I’ve been frequenting the casinos all over the world for the better part of my life, and I’ve played too many blackjack variants to remember them all. I’ll do my best to give you a taste of the most common ones here today. Grab a pen and paper, because you’ll probably want to take some notes. Here goes!

The first of the blackjack variants I’ll talk about is European Blackjack. This version is played with 2 decks of cards and the decks are shuffled after each game. The dealer in this type of blackjack stands on every hand of 17 or more and hits on all hands of 16 or less. In European Blackjack, even if you have 21 in your hand, a blackjack beats you, no matter what. You can split in this version, and if you split a pair of Aces and then get a 10, it doesn’t count as blackjack because, technically, this is your third card. And this is one of the blackjack variants where you can double, but not after a split, and your double must be equal to your original bet.

The next of the blackjack variants on my short list is called Pontoon. This version is gaining popularity around the world, but originated in England. Here you only use a 48 card deck; the four 10 cards are gone, leaving only the face cards with a value of 10. It’s called “Pontoon” when have a Jack, Queen or King and an Ace, instead of “Blackjack”. And in this version, the dealer has to hit until a hard 17 or more.

Another of the blackjack variants to let you in on is Caribbean 21, which allows players to split any two initial cards and to hit and redouble after doubling. The reason lots of folks like this version because the house advantage is lower than in most blackjack variants. Here, Aces are always worth 1 point only, and never 11. Hitting and Standing rules, as well as doubling and splitting are the same as in the standard game. An Ace and two 10-cards is called a "Caribbean 21" and beats any other 21 combination, and in this version, the dealer wins all tie hands, so watch for this one!

Well, I think that’s about enough for now. There’s some much information on blackjack variants that I can’t fit it all on one page. As I said, all I wanted to do was give you a taste, so there you have it. Remember, if you want to find out any more about blackjack variants, you can always visit my resources page. There’s sure to be a link to another fine blackjack site with the info you’re seeking. Thanks for visiting this page, and be sure to make the most of the rest of my site too!

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